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Article-a-Day #5: Open Culture-Hear the First Recorded Blues Song by an African American Singer: Mamie Smith’s “Crazy Blues” (1920)

Mamie Smith had been a vaudeville performer, working since childhood as “an all around entertainer,” as the Library of Congress’s Michael Taft remarks on NPR. The Blues Encyclopedia points out that her theatrical background and flamboyant personality lent much to the “the archetypal ‘Queen of the Blues’ persona” inhabited by so many later singers.


Listen to Mamie Smith on Amazon!